LoveMalta reports that Polaris, a 70-meter superyacht owned by Maxim Shubarev, arrived in the Grand Harbour the last week. Shubarev is the beneficial owner of Setl Group and has a net worth of $500 million. He is neither an oligarch nor part of a sanctions list dished out by the EU against Russian oligarchs. Shubarev purchased Maltese citizenship via the Golden Passport scheme in 2018.
Polaris hit the water in 2014 and was the second in the powerful Prince Shark superyacht series from the Italian builder Rossinavi.
Malta officials may be concerned about Maxim Shubarev and other Russian Golden Passport owners and their superyachts. The Polaris arrived just days after European Parliament President Roberta Metsola urged Malta to stop letting “Russian superyachts into our harbors.” Malta’s government has been facing serious questions over ties to Russia in recent days, particularly over the country’s controversial passport selling program. The scheme has been stopped for Russians and Belarussians; however, this came after intense public pressure.
Malta has also one of the largest yachting registries in the world and is the preferred registered home for many Russians.